Don’t do anything stupid

August 19, 2010 Leave a comment
A Christmas Story

Image via Wikipedia

When I was a kid, my mom had odd rules.  At least to my little kid mind they were odd rules.  They were not a set of rules written on a page, but rather guidance given out when the time seemed right.  Things like:

Can I get a bb gun like my friends have?  No, you’ll shoot your eye out. (Yes, just like Ralphie’s mom in A Christmas Story.)

Can I get the GI Joe helicopter with the spinning rotor?  No, you’ll poke your eye out.

Can I get a rubber knife like my friends have?  No, you’ll poke someone else’s eye out.

Well, ok.  I embellish a bit.  Not everything was about poking out an eye.  There was the occasional “You know Superman is not real and people can’t fly, right?”

It wasn’t until I had kids of my own that I understood the guidance.  It wasn’t about having the rules.  It was my mom’s way of saying “don’t do anything stupid.”  She was concerned that, as kids are inclined to do, I would do something stupid that would result in me getting hurt.  Usually irreparably damaged, like losing an eye.

Today I find myself doling out similar rules to my kids.  Don’t go in the road.  Don’t run with the scissors.  Hold the knife by the handle.  I even told my son to not lean over the second floor balcony because he might fall.  Not like there might be a sudden shift in the earth’s gravitational pull, causing him to suddenly and inexplicably fall.  More so in case he climbed too far to look over the balcony, and leaned too far past his center of gravity.  Slim chance, I know.  But those are my ways of telling him to not do anything stupid.

So thanks, mom, for passing along the guidance.  I can’t say I didn’t do anything stupid, but I do have all my body parts in their original places.


A time to lead, and a time to follow

August 11, 2010 Leave a comment

I showed one of my favorite videos to my team today, a Ted talk by Derek Sivers on how to start a movement.  It turned out to be a great way to get everyone thinking about how they can lead, be the second to join in, or be part of the crowd looking to be hip.  The message is important:  there are times we need to be the idea leader (the shirtless guy dancing alone in a field in the video), there are times we need to be an early adopter (the first follower joining the shirtless dancing guy), and there are times we need to be part of the crowd.  If not for followers, leaders would never get anything done.  Followership is just as important as leadership.

Categories: Working life

Time to make the donuts

August 11, 2010 Leave a comment

I’ve been blogging at work for almost two years now, and figured it was time to get my thoughts out in a more public forum.  Right now, just looking for my rhythm so stay tuned.

Categories: Uncategorized